Life After Surgery

Exercising and physical therapy are an important part of the recovery process. You should continue your physical therapy exercises. Remember, you should take an active role in your recovery and life after surgery. Stay positive and try not to become discouraged. Stay motivated and work to obtaining the strength needed to perform those activities you were unable to do prior to surgery.

Be sure and notify your dental provider of your total joint replacement surgery and the date of the surgery before any type of dental work are completed. Depending on the dental procedure, you may be given antibiotics prior to the procedure.

Seek medical attention for any signs or symptoms of infection.

Signs and symptoms of infection

Persistent fever
Shaking chills
Increased or foul smelling drainage from incision
Frequency or hesitancy when urinating

Body changes

Decrease in diet is normal. Increase amount of fluids in your diet. Over time, your diet will return to normal. You may experience difficulty sleeping which is normal. Try not to sleep too much during the day. Constipation may occur. Activity aids in the prevention and treatment of constipation. Increase the amount of fluids and fiber in your diet.

Incision site care

Keep your incision clean and dry. Do not change your dressing unless instructed to by your surgeon. Do not shower until your surgeon gives approval. Notify your surgeon if increased drainage, redness, pain or odor around the incision becomes apparent.

Signs of a blood clot

Signs of a blood clot include swelling in the thigh, calf or ankle on either leg that does not subside with elevation. Pain or tenderness in calf, redness of calf or a warm feeling or shiny appearance of the leg can also be signs for a blood clot.

Blood Clot prevention

Frequent changes in body position, walking and ankle pumps help prevent blood clots. Ensure you receive the recommended duration of the blood thinner prescribed at your discharge. Avoid sitting for long periods of time. When traveling, stop every one to two hours and change positions whether in a car or airplane.

A blood clot can develop in either leg. Seek immediate medical attention if you are having any signs of a blood clot.